In traditional bodybuilding, here is the standard equipment that you need to obtain results, in order of effectiveness:
• Barbells: they are the basic bodybuilding tool and are very effective. They are used in the basic exercises for developing maximum power by recruiting more motor units and using more muscle fibres. Beginners in bodybuilding can use them after 2 or 3 weeks of adjusting using machines.
• Dumbbells: they have the same benefits as the barbells while also allowing you to exercise the left and right side separately and increase the amplitude.
• Pulleys: They give you the option to exercise safely with a high amplitude
• Machines: they are mainly intended for beginners as they are safer to use. They can also be used for finishing work.
In recent years, other tools have increased in popularity:
• Kettle bells: they are used for practical exercises (which have an impact in everyday life) and are used for exercising muscle-chains with weightlifting exercises.
• Electro-stimulation: this equipment works using unwanted muscle stimulation. This type of work is useful in active recovery for oxygenating the muscles and improving muscle tone. It must be done in association with conventional weight training exercises. Injured sportsmen and women generally use it for muscle reconstruction.
• Straps: suspension training can be very effective. Working out using the body's weight exercises all the muscle groups in depth, strengthens the abs and improves the definition of the figure. It is also a good exercise for improving your balance.
2. How To Get Quick Results?
There is no point in pretending that there is a set time period for the results to become visibly noticeable. Everyone's physical characteristics are different and the genetic predispositions vary from one individual to another. It's hard to know if your progress will be fast or not when you start bodybuilding.
Moreover, the rate at which you build muscle mass is variable and non-linear. It depends on factors such as your lifestyle, age, eating habits, not to mention the bodybuilding programme.
Nevertheless, week after week, you will notice for yourself the improvement in your performance at the different exercises: gain in power, better endurance, superior flexibility, etc.
Our advice: to progress faster in bodybuilding and achieve your goal, apply the following winning formula: bodybuilding + cardio exercises + stretching + recovery + suitable diet.
The more complete your training while sticking to the set rest times, the sooner you will start seeing results.
In general, bear in mind that conclusive results are generally observed from the 3rd month of regular weight training. Again, this varies from one person to another. Naturally, it is easier for someone with a relatively puny physique to get ripped and improve muscle definition than to build 30 lbs of muscle mass...
Bodybuilding is a discipline that requires patience!
3. How Many Repetitions For Which Objective?
In general, you should bear in mind that, ultimately, it is not so much the number of repetitions that will help you reach your bodybuilding objective. Rather, it is the workload. Indeed, for a given load, you are always at the upper limit of your capacity.
Here are some pointers to help you get bodybuilding results:
• Increasing your maximum power: the number of repetitions is between 1 and 5 per series, i.e. between 21 and 25 repetitions in total per basic exercise. The workload is between 85% and 100% of the 1RM*
• Building muscle mass: the number of repetitions is between 6 and 8 per series, i.e. between 35 and 80 repetitions in total per muscle group. The workload is between 80% and 85% of the 1RM.
• Getting bigger: the number of repetitions is between 8 and 12 per series, i.e. between 80 and 200 repetitions in total per muscle group. The workload is between 70% and 80% of the 1RM.
• Improving endurance: the number of repetitions is between 12 and 20 per series, i.e. more than 200 repetitions per muscle group. The workload is between 50% and 70% of the 1RM.
• Getting ripped: To lose fat, you must increase the cardio training work to burn calories (treadmill, exercise bike, cross trainer) while also following a low-calorie diet and do weight training to increase the basic metabolic rate. Consequently, you can continue your bodybuilding training during a fat loss phase.
You now know some of the basic tips for improving your bodybuilding performance. During your training at the gym, do not hesitate to speak to a sports coach to point you in the right direction. Their expertise will help you reach your goal faster.
* The 1RM or repetition maximum in bodybuilding, is the maximum weight you can lift, pull or push in a single movement.